Would you buy a grey market Nikon camera or lens?

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Would you buy a grey market Nikon camera or lens?

Postby haring on Mon Sep 08, 2014 12:54 am

Have you ever bought a grey market Nikon camera or lens? Currently all my Nikon stuff is USA not grey market. The price difference is close to $1000 between a grey market Nikon D4s and its USA Nikon counterpart. It is just too tempting....

Did you have any problems servicing your grey market camera or lens? Did you find a third party service center after Nikon had refused fixing it? Are those third party service centers reliable? Are they more expensive than the Nikon USA Service center?

I just want to find out whether it is worth it to save $1000 now and service a grey market product in the USA.

Thanks so much!
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Re: Would you buy a grey market Nikon camera or lens?

Postby petermmc on Mon Sep 08, 2014 2:29 pm

Hi Naring,

I am writing a rather long response to you as I am procrastinating in working on my doctoral thesis which is about the time management behaviours of small business managers.

I have bought quite a few grey goodies over the years. I have purchased all of my Nikon bodies ie D70, D7000 & D600 from authorised dealers and my D200 was bought for me as a gift from DD Photographics which imports and sells Grey gear. I returned the D200 for minor repairs ie hot pixels and rubber grips. It was fixed quickly and without any problems although I am not sure who actually fixed it. That was quite some time ago now. Recently I had my D600 go in for its free replacement shutter, just because I could, and I found the service from Nikon excellent door to door. I was glad I purchased this through an authorised dealer as I was required to submit my receipt with the transaction.

In regard to lenses, my first quite expensive lens was the 70-200 which I purchased from DDs about five or six years ago. At the time, this lens was about $500 cheaper from DDs than in any regular camera store. It has never missed a beat (takes good photos also). Subsequent expensive lenses such as the 14-24 and the 24 - 70 I purhased from authorised dealers. Smaller lenses and 2x converters have been mostly purchased from DDs or others. I purchased the 300 F4, a few converters, a 50mm 1.8 and 35mm 1.8 through them. I also purchased the new 85mm 1.8 from a website that I hadn't used before. So, all in all I have had a fair bit of experience with grey products. I purchased a few items though the now defunct 'dslrusers on line shop' which I found very competitive and very well run. I also lost $410.00 on a 1.4x converter when a now 'ex dslruser member' convinced me to deposit directly into his account...the birdy then flew the coup! This was ages ago but I still occasionally feel the burn. This in no way stopped me from purchasing grey, it just made me a little wiser and more careful. (I then bought another Nikon 1.4 converter and somehow have managed to lose it on my last holiday...I am jinxed with 1.4 converters)

My policy, which I retrospectively have just this minute developed based on my purchase history, has been to buy cameras through authorised dealers and to buy lenses up to $1k from grey sources. I have never had a problem with a lens other than replacing the rubber which Nikon can't seem to make stick.

I hope that in some way addressed some of your issues and every success with your purchases. Back to my research.

All the best.

peter
Nikon & Olympus
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Re: Would you buy a grey market Nikon camera or lens?

Postby aim54x on Mon Sep 08, 2014 3:51 pm

I have always bought my camera (new) bodies from authorised dealers or direct from distributor (the joys of working in camera retail) and pretty much the same with lenses. I have yet to need to service the few items that I have bought grey or imported myself (MB-D10, SB-800, 50/1.8D). In my experience (note this, and almsot all the other advice on this forum is based on the Australian experience) is that Nikon AU is a bit iffy with grey market products, you cannot get a warranty claim on it, but if you are paying for the repair they dont seem to mind. I have heard of cases of refusal of service but I cannot conclusively verify those. I do konw a good Nikon Authorised repairer who will service whatever I give to him though.

TL;DR
-Nikon AU will happily charge you for a repair of a grey market product
-stories exist about refusal of service, but I have not been able to verify
-good Nikon Authorised technicians/repairers may be the way around it.
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Re: Would you buy a grey market Nikon camera or lens?

Postby ozimax on Mon Sep 08, 2014 6:40 pm

petermmc wrote:I am writing a rather long response to you as I am procrastinating in working on my doctoral thesis which is about the time management behaviours of small business managers.


I was going to write a thesis on procrastination but I couldn't be bothered to start... :biglaugh: :biglaugh:

petermmc wrote:It has never missed a beat (takes good photos also).

:biglaugh:


petermmc wrote:My policy, which I retrospectively have just this minute developed based on my purchase history,

You've made my day Peter with some homespun but very bad humour. Well, it's bad but no worse than my lame attempts...
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Re: Would you buy a grey market Nikon camera or lens?

Postby haring on Tue Sep 09, 2014 12:10 pm

Thanks so much for all the responses!
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Re: Would you buy a grey market Nikon camera or lens?

Postby haring on Mon Apr 13, 2015 6:43 am

petermmc wrote:Hi Naring,

I am writing a rather long response to you as I am procrastinating in working on my doctoral thesis which is about the time management behaviours of small business managers.

I have bought quite a few grey goodies over the years. I have purchased all of my Nikon bodies ie D70, D7000 & D600 from authorised dealers and my D200 was bought for me as a gift from DD Photographics which imports and sells Grey gear. I returned the D200 for minor repairs ie hot pixels and rubber grips. It was fixed quickly and without any problems although I am not sure who actually fixed it. That was quite some time ago now. Recently I had my D600 go in for its free replacement shutter, just because I could, and I found the service from Nikon excellent door to door. I was glad I purchased this through an authorised dealer as I was required to submit my receipt with the transaction.

In regard to lenses, my first quite expensive lens was the 70-200 which I purchased from DDs about five or six years ago. At the time, this lens was about $500 cheaper from DDs than in any regular camera store. It has never missed a beat (takes good photos also). Subsequent expensive lenses such as the 14-24 and the 24 - 70 I purhased from authorised dealers. Smaller lenses and 2x converters have been mostly purchased from DDs or others. I purchased the 300 F4, a few converters, a 50mm 1.8 and 35mm 1.8 through them. I also purchased the new 85mm 1.8 from a website that I hadn't used before. So, all in all I have had a fair bit of experience with grey products. I purchased a few items though the now defunct 'dslrusers on line shop' which I found very competitive and very well run. I also lost $410.00 on a 1.4x converter when a now 'ex dslruser member' convinced me to deposit directly into his account...the birdy then flew the coup! This was ages ago but I still occasionally feel the burn. This in no way stopped me from purchasing grey, it just made me a little wiser and more careful. (I then bought another Nikon 1.4 converter and somehow have managed to lose it on my last holiday...I am jinxed with 1.4 converters)

My policy, which I retrospectively have just this minute developed based on my purchase history, has been to buy cameras through authorised dealers and to buy lenses up to $1k from grey sources. I have never had a problem with a lens other than replacing the rubber which Nikon can't seem to make stick.

I hope that in some way addressed some of your issues and every success with your purchases. Back to my research.

All the best.

peter


I am thinking about buying a $2k lens for $1.4k from a grey reatailer.... It is just tooo tempting...
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Re: Would you buy a grey market Nikon camera or lens?

Postby zafra52 on Mon Apr 13, 2015 12:50 pm

I have bought lenses from a Hong Kong dealer a few years back that used to offer equipment discount to members of this forum and I saved a lot of money. I had no trouble with the equipment I bought, but I am not a professional photographer and I do not use the camera or lenses that much. Personally, if I had to earn a living on photography I would not compromise with warranties. I am sorry, if I haven't been of too much use.
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Re: Would you buy a grey market Nikon camera or lens?

Postby Murray Foote on Tue Apr 14, 2015 3:55 pm

Most of my cameras and lenses I have bought grey market from Hong Kong. However, you are asking the question in an Australian Forum and our experiences may not be relevant to you.

Nikon Australia will repair any Nikon lens or camera. It's just a question of whether you have a warranty or not. I'm pretty sure Nikon USA no longer accepts grey market lenses and cameras for repair. Something for you to check.
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